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Background to Private Awards: Randy Sitter Graduate Scholarship

June 05, 2014

Have you ever wondered where your the money for your award came from? Here is the background for one of the many private awards available.

Through the generosity and leadership of Department Chair Richard Lockhart, the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science raised enough money to fully endow a scholarship to honour and remember Prof. Randy Sitter for generations to come.

Randy Sitter was a successful and well-loved faculty member in the department since the early 1990's. When he died in a kayaking accident in 2007, his colleagues, friends and family members joined forces to to raise money for a memorial scholarship. Professor Lockhart made a big push during the 2010 Campus Giving Campaign. He wrote letters asking people to donate and made departmental matching funds available to encourage support. Through these efforts and a personal gift, the fund grew large enough to be permanently endowed.

The Randy Sitter Graduate Scholarship in Statistics and Actuarial Science is awarded each year to a graduate student in the department who possesses some of the qualities that were hallmarks of Professor Sitter's life: passion for research, an untiring work ethic, support for his colleagues, fair-mindedness and a hatred of injustice.

"Randy did a great job of mentoring, training and nurturing graduate students. He did everything he could do to ensure that they would be successful," says Dr. Lockhart. "This scholarship is consistent with his beliefs and is a great tribute to him." 

"Graduate students live near the edge all the time," he adds. "Student support is important, especially now that education is so much more expensive."

If you have received a private award please consider writing a letter of appreciation. Please see this document for advice on how to write a letter of thanks.

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